Posted on 2 July 2013 with categories: Anime Reviews, Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet



Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet tells the storyline of a planet that is completely submerged, with only giant ships residing on the surface, while one of those ships gets visited by this guy and his AI-mecha from this very technologically advanced civilization. Yes, this show is about world building.

What this show managed to do really well is create a culture for the people who live on these ships, complete with customs, a new religion, a clothe style, a way of behavior. They use the technologically advanced culture well to explore this culture by clashing it, and show the differences. The show can keep this up, and it definitely has some interesting ideas to explore.

The shame is that this is a 13-episoded series that really just needed 26 episodes. It’s not rushed because of that, but it does have pacing issues, and glosses over a lot, and doesn’t really get to explore this setting to its fullest.Same goes for the characters: there are some good ones here: Ledo and his AI have this really good chemistry, and the acting in general is also quite good and down to earth… with some notable exceptions though. There are a number of annoying characters, and really weird character character-decisions that don’t make much sense. The storyline has nice ideas on one hand, but it does get a bit boring and redundant at others. Especially the beginning is good, and the conclusion also has its moments, but in the middle there are a few episodes that could have been better used; they waste too much time.

It’s a solidly produced series, and the creators managed to make this show stand out with tis visuals that manage to remain expressive. Gargantia is a show with issues, but I personally think that the pros weigh over the cons and it’s worth a watch. Just don’t go out of your way to watch it though, because there just are better series.
One-Sentence Review: Good world-building and characterization versus some big pacing issues causing this show to not get the full potential out of its ingredients, by far.
Suggestions:
Blue Submarine No.06
Heat Guy J
Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind

Posted on with categories: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet

So here we have the conclusion of Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet. Overall I’d have to say that it’s a solid ending, but nothing special. The animation in the final episode was very well done, and the whole bond between Ledo and Chamber really stood out as the best (even though it’s kindof weird that Chamber died… seeing as how he’s an AI and could easily have survived if he just copied his personality to that escape pod or something).

The evil robot who took control over humanity was definitely a more solid final conflict than “the Hideazu are human”, It was very sudden though, and acted like how everything was just wrapped up neatly… even though a ton of people died. Seriously, this show was more dramatic about the Hideazu being human (even though they were more than guilty of their own things) than the murder of tons of innocent people.

But yeah, as the final conflict… it does feel like we just skimmed the surface here. Gargantia should have been 24 episodes long, because the creators can actually do very nice things if they continue to build up from here. With this though, it just feels like too much is missing, and none of the characters really got their chance to show their growth, apart from Ledo perhaps, but even he feels like he can become better with another season. He may have changed, but he doesn’t really feel rounded still. This is why I feel like the perfect length for a series is 26 episodes: it’s neither too short nor too long; it has enough time to develop its characters really well, and it also needs to pace itself properly so there is little chance of dragging on. But yeah, that does require budget, and the producers probably didn’t manage to gather enough for 2 cours.

As for the overall writing itself… I’d say that this story is Urobuchi Gen’s worst written story, save for perhaps Blassreiter. It was definitely lighter than what he wrote before, but what I missed here was the character-development, going back to what I said before. All of his other adaptations so far had development that made some sort of impact, even on a shorter story. This one mostly had its world building, and while it was well-done, the setting wasn’t THAT special.
Rating: 4,5/8 (Good)

Posted on 13 June 2013 with categories: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet

Aah, the build-up. The thing is, this episode on its own was really good. Here you can really see that Urobuchi Gen wrote this, in the cold way he analyzes his settings, and he really has a character who is as objective as possible, setting aside any personal bias you might have. That part on its own ws really well written.

Gen loves to use this cold, realistic and objective character on one side, and a naive (but not stereotypically naive) character on the other. The fact that this character is not stereotypically naive is important: this prevents cheese. Ledo went from this cold-hearted guy to someone with a lot of empathy. The thing is that I have trouble buying that he changed so radically. He was very well able to think rationally: the fact remains that the Hideazu have threatened the existence of humankind. I can understand that he would feel conflicted about killing humans, but he didn’t even try to consider both options. That was a missed opportunity I feel.

I believe that Gargantia would have been best if it was about a season and a half long. As weird as it sounds, the creators should have had more episodes like number 6 and 7, dedicated to explain exactly why the characters in this series changed, the way they did. Right now the character-development is great, but a bit out of left field. Pinion for example: he was this normal guy until last episode suddenly revealed that he has this big trauma with his lost brother, and now suddenly he’s leading his own ship that takes over pirate ships and… stuff. Note though: these are nitpicks. Overall I like this series a lot.
Rating: 5/8 (Great)

Posted on 7 June 2013 with categories: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet

So in these two episodes Gargantia gets back on track. For starters, I really thought that that captain dying was just a minor plot point: something that had to happen, but would be glossed over pretty quickly. Instead the creators dedicate nearly an entire episode to it. And it was really good: it showed what an impact death can have for such a fleet. It showed how some people didn’t have confidence in the new captain, and therefore roke up. It had a much bigger impact than I thought it would, and not just for plot related reasons. I think that that episode was really well put together.

The episode after that showed the real identity of the hideazu. It’s a twist that reminded me a lot about a certain other show which I’m not going to mention here for the sake of spoilers. I mean, what’s important here is not the twist itself, but the context: what does it mean for the actual plot? Well, for that it’s a bit shoehorned. I’m not suddenly feeling sorry for Ledo that he killed what once were a bunch of humans, because really: that just looks down on actual wars, and I don’t really understand why he suddenly felt sorry: these ARE the creaturs who threatened his race to extinction.

However, for world building, it was great. Heck show me more about those Hideazu who were genetically engineered humans. They sound interesting! Their backstory as humanity’s last hope of surviving the ice age sounds definitely interesting. Okay, it’s a bit far-fetched, but I like the ideas.

Overall, you can see tha the individual episode directors of this series got some freedom: there is definitely some general pacing and continuous story, but every episode has a slightly different atmosphere and tone. I’m not sure whether this really is the right formula for this series, but at the very least things are looking better than the previous episodes again. Still, I think that the pacing here could have been a little smoother.
Rating: 5/8 (Great)

Posted on 23 May 2013 with categories: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet

So I understand… some of the intentions behind episode five and six. Really, the logic behind the big picture is more than apparent: we needed time to show Ledo getting accustomed to this new culture he ended up at. We needed a chance for the viewers to get a good view of the Gargantia without any drama in it, until that squid came and Ledo had to stir things up again. I like the outcome, but the way in which they got there was a bit weird.

The thing is, that these episodes just weren’t interesting to watch. The creators really could have spent their time better there, instead of going on and on about the random fanservice. They could have used that time to show some geniune and everyday interactions between the characters. Instead they went with a beach episode and silly dances. Sorry, but that just feels shallow. Especially in two consecutive episodes. The creators can write more interesting episodes.

Episode seven thankfully returned to the real business, and I really like what happened. It’s a great twist that the Hideazu have pretty much already settled down on earth, they just chose not to act for now, for whatever reason. Whether they chose to coexist and have something against fancy technology, or they’re just waiting for the right opportunity still remains a question. It’s because of this that Ledo’s actions aren’t inherently wrong; he just acted really rashly.

Convenient heart attack aside, this episode was full of people clashing with each other based on a lot of different values, whether cultural or practical. On one hand there are the Hideazu who have a status as gods, then there is Ledo’s duty, that girl’s personal preference for not wanting to see the guy in a battle, the captain’s concern for the whole population of the gargantia and then there are these economists willing to take a risk for a possible treasure that will benefit the entire Gargantia in the long run. All of them clash together. That really feels like Urobuchi Gen again.
Rating: 3,5/8 (Enjoyable for episodes 5 and 6), 5.5/8 (Excellent for episode 7)

Posted on 3 May 2013 with categories: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet

I made a really big mistake when first judging this series by its trailer: I thought that the characters looked really generic. In the end that turned out to be the big strength of this series. The thing with the character here is that they don’t try to force their quirks onto the viewer. Because of that they seem plain at first, but this show managed to flesh them out quite well here. You can see that all characters are based on some kind of idea, but when you look at them, they are more than just that idea. The ones who received attention, anyway.

I really liked this episode, which was all about exploring the cultural differences. On one hand there is Led with his military training and education, and on the other there is the social community on the Gargantia. I really liked how much inefficiencies Ledo saw in the way everyone operated (even though he too had trouble fitting in at times). The development of him fitting in is slow, but he’s constantly changing so far. I also really like how he’s beginning to pick up the language.

Also, yay for continuity. A hole in a roof stays broken until it gets fixed. And it doesn’t just get magically fixed, it takes resources that come from somewhere. That’s what I’m looking for: those kinds of details. It’s a shame that this show only has 12 episodes to flesh out its setting, because the creators are on their way, digging for gold, though the question is whether they’ll reach it in time.
Rating: 5.5/8 (Excellent)

Posted on 25 April 2013 with categories: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet

This show… it feels like a bit of a combination between Ghibli and Last Exile. But things like the pirates (especially that pirate queen), the atmosphere, the sense of adventure. You can really see that this show takes a lot of cues from them, while at the same time using Leda to create its own identity.

This episode built up some very good suspense of disbelief with how it dealt about the deaths of those pirates last episode. It really put emphasis that that would have some very dire consequences, and that they’re basically at war with the pirates now. The rest of this episode took care of that quickly, but still it serves as a good build-up here. I doubt that that was the last that we’ve seen of them.

The thing right now is that that one robot is pretty much a godmode-button. Normally in storytelling this completely takes away all tension. And this will also go for this season, unless the creators do something with it. That brings us back to Urobuchi Gen, who obviously took that into account. The question now is: what will he do with it? Will he now focus on problems that can’t be solved with brute strength? Will he remain all-powerful, but will this turn into an exploration of the complications that this brings with it? Or will it pull in more people of Led’s kind, throwing the people of the Gargantia in the middle of a conflict that’s way above their heads?
Rating: 5.5/8 (Excellent)

Posted on 17 April 2013 with categories: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet

Suisei no Gargantia, pretty much the best mecha series of the season. What I like best so far is how it’s more than just mecha: it’s just a story that has a mecha in it, it has a bit of gunplay in it, it has a bit of post apocalypse. It’s very varied and fleshed out. compare that to Majestic Prince, which feels very monotone, or Valvrave that just puts the tried and true school formula in a place where it doesn’t belong. Plus it’s the only show that can actually take itself seriously. That’s also a plus. I mean I like comedy as well and all, but comedy that feels out of place does more harm than good for me.

Not to say that this series is perfect though. The characters strangely remain teenagers, and the lead female in particular needs to be fleshed out more (though granted, she got a lot more tolerable in this second episode), and the same goes for the rest of the cast: aside from the male lead none really stands out so far, so the creators need to develop them somehow. Make them interesting.

What I liked about this show is that you can see that it’s going to escalate. That was quite cleverly done, in the way that those pirates were obliterated so easily without effort. It’s just the build-up to something much bigger and much worse, something that Urobuchi Gen tends to be good at. Though I’m not expecting a gore-fest, I am expecting that things will escalate somehow. It’s up to him to find a good way.
Rating: 5/8 (Great)

Star Crossed Anime Blog

7 User(s) Online Join Server

Featured Posts

Fruits Basket (2019) – 12 [You Look Like You’re Having Fun]

More than any other episode, this week is where Fruits Basket embraces its two opposing spectrums the clearest: it’s reverse-harem hijinks of highschool life and romance and its dark drama about the Zodiac members. By that light, we can be able to see this adaptation’s quality by this episode alone. For example, this 2019 is […]

Carole & Tuesday – 11 [With or Without You]

Even with Carole & Tuesday standard, this episode is a letdown with many forced developments to move this predictable story forward. These include 1) Tuesday injures her hand but still manage to perform and win the bracket 2) just right at the moment Tuesday said no one in the family care for her, she gets […]

Sarazanmai – 11 [I Want to Connect, so Sarazanmai]

I must admit that days after watching this finale I still can’t wrap my head around all the events happened in this episode. Sarazanmai ends in a happy tone, something I didn’t expect from Ikuhara to be honest. On the most surface level, it’s a rescue mission from Kazuki and Enta to bring Toi back. […]

Kimetsu no Yaiba – 12 [The Boar Bares Its Fangs, Zenitsu Sleeps]

Welcome all to what is, for me, a very conflicted episode of Kimetsu no Yaiba. Filled with fantastic animation, some well thought out fights and a character I loathe no matter how great his scenes look. Let’s dive in! Starting off, Yaiba looked great this week. I don’t think that’s really up for contention. I have […]

Serial Experiments Lain – 8 [Rumors] – Throwback Thursday

Welcome to another episode of Acid Trip Weekly, also known as, Serial Experiments Lain! This week is one of the most confusing, yet simultaneously coherent episodes of anime I have ever watched. It’s impossible to summarize, so let’s just dive in. Starting off, like I said, this episode was an acid trip, both visually and […]

One Punch Man Season 2 – 10 [The Encirciling Net of Justice]

https://www.sakugabooru.com/data/2c523ad11331508ce3e674f68b79ccf2.mp4 Welcome one and all to a rather surprising week of One Punch Man Season 2! This week the animation was mostly fine, and interesting things happened, so let’s just jump right in! Starting off, I rail against the series a lot, but credit where it’s due. The sections of the Garou fight done by […]

Dororo – 23 [The Story of the Demons]

Welcome one and all to the penultimate episode of Dororo. We have brutality, we have drama, and we have a boatload of philosophy. Its everyone Game of Thrones Season 8 said it would be, but wasn’t. Is it too late to make that joke? Regardless, this was a good week for Dororo, so let’s jump […]

Mix – 11 [Try Pitching]

Good news for all you Mix fans out there: the show is likely to be two cour, as the Wikipedia page for its timeslot doesn’t have a replacement listed until October. That means three more months of baseball, romance, and mystifying Japanese puns before Hero Academia S4 kicks Mix off the air for the fall […]

Kimetsu no Yaiba – 11 [Tsuzumi Mansion]

Welcome to another episode of Kimetsu no Yaiba! This week we finally meet the rest of our leading group, find a new Demon and deal with some… odd tonal issues. Lets dive in! Starting off, Zenitsu. I have to say, whatever Yaiba is planning with him, so far I am not impressed. The man was […]

Latest Reviews

[Star Crossed Anime Exclusive] Code Geass: Lelouch of the Resurrection Review – 80/100

I was lucky enough to be at Sakura-con in Seattle on 20 April 2019 for the Funimation’s movie premiere of Code Geass’ third movie with the Director himself, Gorō Taniguchi, along with his senior staff in attendance inside a room full of raving fans. Was it was worth the decade-long wait to have a worthy […]

Paranoia Agent Anime Review – 67/100

In an era of the mundane, where every series is the same moe blob, the weird sticks out. Even the most mediocre series can get attention just by being weird. Paranoia Agent is not mediocre, and it is far beyond simply “weird”. Written and Directed by Satoshi Kon, Paranoia Agent is one of his last […]

Boogiepop wa Warawanai (2019) (Winter 2019) Anime Review – 78/100

Just like the titular character, Boogiepop Phantom the series has become some sort of urban legend itself in this medium. Its Light Novels are amongst the first Light Novel ever released, dating back to mid-90s. Moreover, the franchise has endured the test of time, as it inspires anime, live-action adaptations and Boogiepop is a well-known […]

Kouya no Kotobuki Hikoutai (2019 Winter) Anime Review – 77/100

Coming to Kotobuki, there are lots of aspect that catch my attention: it’s from a famed director Tsutomu Mizushima who can turn the most trashable and genre-able concepts into something intriguing; it’s an CG show about air pilots: it has extended aerial combat set-pieces. Watching it till the end, I have to tip my hat […]

Kemurikusa (2019 Winter) Anime Review – 79/100

Kemurikusa is your very definition of an overlooked gem, one that never really gain much discussion anywhere, but one that has a distinctive style from an up-and-coming auteur who has full control of his projects. Coming to Kemurikusa, all the attention it has came from the fact that it is created by TATSUKI, a mastermind […]

Mob Psycho 100 S2 Anime Review – 87/100

Upon finishing this series, the only question on my mind was how many animators did Bones sacrifice on ONE’s altar to achieve this. Following their prior season, Mob Psycho 100 Season 2 continues Bones adaptation of webcomic and manga author ONE’s 4th work, Mob Psycho 100. ONE has also authored the critically acclaimed One Punch […]

Kaguya-sama wa Kokurasetai Review – 84/100

Anime draws on many different media types in its endless search for properties to adapt, but manga is still the king of the bunch. And why not? It’s a distinctly Japanese art form, their main demographics have significant overlap, and manga’s panel-based layout means that some of the anime staff’s work is already done. Plenty […]

Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteiru Anime Review – 93/100

Recently, sports anime have become a bit of a dying breed. Falling into the same hole as Mecha, aside from a passionate base audience, most are overlooked. There are the occasional hits like Haikyuu, Yuri on Ice, or Darling in the Franxx for Mecha, but those are few and far between, often taking years. Even […]

A quick and dirty review of Garo: Vanishing Line

What it claims to be about: A secret order of knights and alchemists, the Makai Knights and Alchemists, fight horrifying creatures called Hollows who prey on human weakness .Part of the media franchise spanning anime and live action shows, this iteration is set in modern metropolis and concerns the attempts of Sword, the strongest Makai […]